Pneumonia patient ‘sent home in nightie’

Linda McLaughlin with the thin hospital nightgown her mother June Harvey was sent home from hospital in following treatment for sepsis and pneumonia. Picture: Mecha Morton

A hospital is investigating how an 83-year-old woman with pneumonia was sent home wearing only a thin gown instead of the warm clothes her family had provided.

Linda McLaughlin says her mother June Harvey arrived home in Bury St Edmunds at 4pm last Friday ‘shivering from head to foot’.

June Harvey

“They might as well have put her in a fridge,” said Mrs McLaughlin, from Peterhouse Close, Mildenhall.

Mrs Harvey had been admitted to West Suffolk Hospital on January 6 with pneumonia and sepsis. When she was due to come home, the family took in a holdall, containing outdoor clothes, a coat and warm boots, which was sent home with her in the minibus ambulance.

Mrs McLaughlin said: “Nobody had gone into the bag – it was sent home in the same state as it went in.

“She has dementia so she wouldn’t have known to have dressed herself. Where’s the basic care of an elderly lady with pneumonia?

“Someone along the line needs to accept the buck for what’s happened. Who was responsible for putting my mum in that transport? I want to know what happened and what’s being done about it.

“If it stops it happening to some other old dear, that’s what I want.”

Rowan Procter, executive chief nurse at West Suffolk NHS Foundation Trust, said: “We are very sorry for any distress caused to Mrs Harvey and her family. This is obviously very disappointing and not the quality of care that West Suffolk NHS Foundation Trust strives for.

“We are investigating what has happened and are ensuring Mrs Harvey’s family are involved in this process.

“We take patient feedback very seriously and are grateful to Mrs Harvey’s family for bringing this to our attention.”

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